Essential Vessel Law and Legal Definition
According to 46 USCS § 56501 [Title 46. Shipping; Subtitle V. Merchant Marine; Part E. Control Of Merchant Marine Capabilities; Chapter 565. Essential Vessels Affected By Neutrality Act] essential vessel means a vessel that is
(1) (A) security for a mortgage indebtedness to the United States Government; or
(B) constructed under this subtitle or required by a contract under this subtitle to be operated on a certain essential foreign trade route; and
(2) necessary in the interests of commerce and national defense to be maintained in condition for prompt use.